Top 20 things to do on Big Island for Feb. 1-7: 31st Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival, Malasada 5K and Spring Festa, live music, Kona Icon 2024 auditions, comedian Augie Tulba and much more

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Whether it’s the “cherry blossom viewing party” that is the 31st Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival, a night of side-splitting laughs and fun with comedian Augie Tulba, celebrating Portuguese culture — and food — at the Malasada Shuffle 5K and Spring Festa or one of the many other events and activities happening around the Big Island during the next week, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

There’s also tons of live music, including Weather Permitting and New Jerusalem at the Blue Dragon Tavern in Kawaihae, Brett Young live in concert at Kona Brewing Co. and Adam Crowe live at Pāpaʻaloa Country Store and Cafe.

Do you have the chops to become the Big Island’s next icon? If you think so, auditions begin next week for the Kona Icon 2024 singing competition.

If you’re looking for something even more artsy to do, check out the Donkey Mill Art Center’s “Bloom” exhibit. The Society for Kona’s Education and Art is also hosting Membership Day.

There’s even a new indoor black light mini golf course in Hilo you can check out.

Here are our top 20 things to do on the Big Island for the week of Feb. 1-7.


No. 1 — 31st Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival (Waimea, Feb. 3)

Big Island Now file photo

It’s once again time to think pink in Waimea. Celebrate the annual blooming of Church Row Park’s historic cherry trees and the age-old Japanese tradition of hanami, which translates to “cherry blossom viewing party.”

Spend the day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. during this multi-venue event throughout town experiencing Japanese and multi-cultural performing arts, plus hands-on demonstrations of bonsai, traditional tea ceremony, food preparation by local chefs and craft vendors. Look for the pink festival banners identifying venues.

Roberts Hawaiʻi will provide a free transportation shuttle between Church Row Park and Parker Ranch Center, though walking is encouraged.

For more information, call 808-961-8706 and find updates on Facebook. You can also find a list of festival events here.


No. 2 — An Evening of Laughter with Augie Tulba (Honoka‘a, Feb. 2; Hilo, Feb. 3)

Image from Facebook

Renowned comedian Augie Tulba takes the stage for two unforgettable performances on the Big Island. The first show will be at 7 p.m. Feb. 7 at Honoka‘a People’s Theatre, located at 45-3574 Māmane St. The second show is set for 7 p.m. Feb. 3 at the Palace Theater, located at 38 Haili St. in Hilo.

Audiences can expect an uproarious experience as Tulba showcases his unique brand of comedy, guaranteed to leave everyone in stitches. Tickets for the Honoka‘a performance are $20 for adults and $10 for children younger than 12 years old. For the Hilo show, general admission is $15, with priority orchestra seating available for $20.

Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy an evening of side-splitting entertainment with one of Hawaiʻi’s most beloved comedians. For more information or to get your tickets early, contact the box offices at each theater or visit their respective websites, which are linked above.

No. 3 — KidX Bestie Bash (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 2)

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With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, many in Kailua-Kona are looking for experiences to share with their loved ones. So Keauhou Shopping Center, located at 78-6831 Aliʻi Drive, is hosting this unique way to celebrate friendship.

Keiki ages 4 to 11 years old and their families can create meaningful gifts and Valentines for their loved ones and best friends from 4 to 6 p.m. in the shopping center’s courtyard, while supplies last.

No registration necessary. For more information, call at 808-322-3000 or visit the shopping center’s website.

No. 4 — Black Light Mini Golf Hilo (Hilo, opening Feb. 1)

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Who doesn’t like a little putt-putt? And why not play through under the glow of black light? If it sounds like a hole-in-one to you, come out and play through at Hilo’s newest mini-golf attraction.

Black Light Mini Golf Hilo is an indoor 18-hole black light miniature golf course located at 57 Shipman St., across from the Hilo Armory. The course is now open for business from 3 to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 3 to 10 p.m. Fridays, noon to 10 p.m. Saturdays and noon to 9 p.m. Sundays.

Stop by and check it out. You can also like, tag and follow the course on Instagram. Include #blacklightminigolfhilo for a chance to win a free four-player pass.

No. 5 — Malasada Shuffle 5K and Spring Festa (Hilo, Feb. 4)

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Come out and celebrate everything Portuguese during this special fun run and festival at Aunty Sally Kaleohano’s Lūʻau Hale, located at 799 Pi’ilani St, beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the Malasada Shuffle 5K run/walk/shuffle. Deadline to register for the shuffle is 6 p.m. Feb. 3.

From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., enjoy good food including tasty malasadas, Portuguese sausage hot dogs, Portuguese bean soup, vinha d’alhos, Portuguese sweetbread, cinnamon sweetbread and Portuguese pickled onions; exhibits featuring the Kona Historical Society, Honoka‘a Heritage Center, Kaʻū Multicultural Society, Portuguese genealogy and language; music; and Aunty Mary’s Store.

It’s going to be a fun day. For more information, contact Marlene Hapai at 808-557-4540 or via email at [email protected].

No. 6 — Hawaiʻi Networking 2024 (Hilo, Feb. 1)

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Enjoy food, beverages, open business networking, bingo networking and door prizes during this event at the AJA Veterans Hall, located at 361 Haihai St. in Hilo.

The event hosted by ABCO Books from 4 to 7 p.m. promises to be an evening of valuable connections, insightful conversations and new opportunities. For more information, call 808-470-4808 or email [email protected].

Purchase tickets at Eventbrite.

No. 7 — “Groundhog Day” (Hilo, Feb. 2)

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Catch this wintertime classic comedy on the silver screen at the Palace Theater, located at 38 Haili St., to follow the escapades of a narcissistic, self-centered weatherman who finds himself in a time loop on Groundhog Day. Starring Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell and Chris Elliott, the movie is rated PG and directed by Harold Ramis.

Showtime is 7 p.m. Doors, box office and concessions open 30 minutes before. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $9 for seniors, students and veterans and can be purchased in advance online.

No. 8 — Chili Dinner and Bingo (Nānāwale, Feb. 3)

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Come on down the first Saturday of every month from 6 to 9 p.m. at VFW Post 3830, located at 15-775 Maluhia Road, to talk story, play some bingo, enjoy some ono grindz and support your local veterans all at the same time.

Receive two complimentary bingo cards with dinner.

Everyone is welcome for a donation of $10 a person. Just follow the blue VFW signs once you turn into Nānāwale.

No. 9 — “Space, Hope and Charity” (Hilo, Feb. 5)

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The Palace Theater, located at 38 Haili St., is happy to present this free screening and following meet-and-greet with Charity Woodrum and director Sandy Cummins as part of the annual Journey Through the Universe program.

The independent documentary is about Woodrum, a young woman from rural Oregon whose dream of becoming an astrophysicist is nearly derailed when she suffers a devastating tragedy. With help from friends, old and new, she finds her way back to the distant galaxies where she feels most at peace.

Showtime is 7 p.m. Doors, box office and concessions open at 6:30 p.m. For more information about the film, click here.

No. 10 — Stained Glass Class (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 1)

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Come for one-on-one and group stained glass classes taught by artist Sheri Reynolds from 9 a.m. to noon at Big Island Stained Glass Studio, located at 75-672 Waiau Place.

Students learn the basics of stained glass, including cutting, grinding, foiling and soldering. Classes include supplies and a small finished project to take home (stand not included), and it only costs $75.

Contact Reynolds at 602-405-1965 or via email at [email protected] to register or for more information.

No. 11 — “Bloom”: Donkey Mill Art Center’s 17th annual Art Auction and Exhibit (Hōlualoa, beginning Feb. 3)

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Join the Mill, located at 78-6670 Māmalahoa Highway, to celebrate and highlight the critical role of the arts as a catalyst for exploration, growth, self-discovery and wellness during this annual exhibit and accompanying silent and live auctions.

This highly anticipated event and fundraiser offers the opportunity to experience and collect an unparalleled selection of artwork from emerging and established artists from Hawai‘i and beyond. Proceeds benefit the Mill’s historic facility and essential arts programs that continue to make a tremendous impact within our community.

The exhibit runs from Feb. 3 through March 2 during regular art center hours. The online silent auction is Feb. 10 through March 2, while the live auction, by invite only, is March 2. View the entire selection of artwork and register online to participate in this year’s auction. For more information, click here.

No. 12 — Membership Day (Captain Cook, Feb. 4)

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The Society for Kona’s Education and Art, located at 84-5191 Māmalahoa Highway, invites the public from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. to this free event featuring live music, local artists, food trucks, vendors, kids crafts and togetherness.

There also will be a secondhand auction. Become a member or just come to enjoy. Donations will be accepted. For more information, click here or follow the society on social media @skea_art.

No. 13 — Brett Young live in concert (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 2)

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BAMP Project presents this special event beginning at 7 p.m. at Kona Brewing Co., located at 74-5617 Pawai Place, which also will feature special guest Justin Kawika Young.

From his self-titled debut in 2017, Young has captured the hearts of fans everywhere through his honest lyrics and West Coast-meets-Southern sound, aptly dubbed “Caliville” style. With an impressive string of seven No. 1 hits, including “In Case You Didn’t Know,” “Mercy” and “Here Tonight,” and multiple hit albums defined by an undeniable romantic spark, he has cemented his status as a master of matters of the heart.

All ages are welcome to attend. Purchase your tickets now online.

No. 14 — Adam Crowe live (Pāpaʻaloa, Feb. 3)

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Come and enjoy great live music from this Pāpaʻaloa resident, who is a blues, rock and folk guitarist and vocalist, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Pāpaʻaloa Country Store and Cafe, located at 35-2032 Old Māmalahoa Highway.

Crowe’s humble mastery of the guitar lights up whatever room he’s in. Before moving here in 2014, he toured the blues and reggae circuits on the mainland’s West Coast with his O’ahu-based band, Freesound. His performance style uses intricate guitar picking and solos over rhythmic looping for a full sound that definitely does each cover complete justice.

For more information, contact the store at 808-339-7614.

No. 15 — New Jerusalem live (Kawaihae, Feb. 2)

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New Jerusalem is a jazz, reggae and soul power trio, featuring Ann Hoku Lyn on trumpet/vocals, Luke “Truth Musiq” on guitar/harmonica and Reggie Griffin on sax/bass.

Lyn has won numerous awards and performs regularly with jazz, soul and reggae bands throughout the Hawaiian Islands. Luke “Truth Musiq,” the face of, is a multi-instrumentalist producer and owner of Truth’s House recording studio. Griffin has produced Grammy-nominated albums such as Chaka Kahn’s “I Feel For You” and “The Message” by Grand Master Flash and the Furious Five.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. The show is from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Blue Dragon Tavern, located at 61-3616 Kawaihae Road. Tickets are $10 in advance or $13 at the door; children 12 and younger are free. Purchase your tickets at the Blue Dragon website.

No. 16 — Fourth annual Valentine’s Day Sip N Shop (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 3-4)

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Gem Vibrations Jewelry, located at 76-6182 Pakalana Road, is ready to share the love again this Valentine’s Day. Come in from noon to 5 p.m. each day to check out the latest jewelry designs and new items such as T-shirts, tote bags and gorgeous crystal and gemstone inventory!

It’s that time of year to show your special someone just how much you love them or give yourself some extra love with a much-deserved high-vibe gift. The shop will have several Valentine’s Day specials available. Bring a friend and enjoy a sip while you shop along with enjoying some crystal lovin’.

Call 808-315-5678 for more information.

No. 17 — Bachata Bash (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 3)

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Come out to the Big Island Social Dance Club, located at 75-5583 Luhia St., for an evening of Bachata music and dancing, plus a few other Latin dances mixed in for fun from 7 to 9 p.m.

Bachata is the fastest-growing Latin dance today. It’s easy, fun, very rhythmic and the songs are great. The music is all about enjoyment, partner dancing and just getting out to discover others who love the same and social connection.

No excuses. Get out and join the club for an evening of great songs and dancing in the most artistically painted studio in Hawaiʻi. Cost is $10 at the door and includes a dance lesson at 7 p.m.

No. 18 — Weather Permitting: A Melodic Family Saga (Kawaihae, Feb. 4)

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Born from the shared passion for music and united by blood ties, this group isn’t just a band, it’s a harmonious fusion of family bonds and musical talent that will be on stage live at the Blue Dragon Tavern, located at 61-3616 Kawaihae Road. This ensemble delivers captivating and eclectic jazz performances leaving audiences spellbound, weather permitting.

The band consists of young piano prodigy Mateo Belmarez, his father and seasoned bass player Brad Belmarez alongside his brother and guitarist Brandon Belmarez. Adding depth and complexity to their sound is the father-son duo of John Lundgren on saxophone and Russell Lundgren on drums. Trombonist Bill Wingert adds layers of richness to their melodies while the enchanting vocals of Sally Woodcock and Jamie Belmarez, who also mesmerize on the flute, transport listeners to higher realms.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the show is from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door; children 12 and younger are free. Purchase your tickets at the Blue Dragon website.

No. 19 — Lunar New Year Celebration (Hilo, Feb. 10; tickets on sale now)

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Get your tickets now for the Chinese Civic Association of Hawaiʻi’s Lunar New Year Celebration at Nani Mau Gardens, located at 421 Makalika St. Doors open at 5 p.m.

Festivities to welcome the Year of the Dragon will include a Chinese banquet family-style dinner, lion dances and martial arts performances by Sam Fu Chinese Cultural Arts. Tickets are $80 per person, with discounts available for tables of 10 purchased together

Don’t wait; tickets are going fast. Purchase yours today at Eventbrite. For more information, contact Chinese Civic Association President Dennis Lin at 808-854-7025.

No. 20 — Auditions for Kona Icon 2024 (Islandwide, beginning Feb. 6)

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Following the success of last year’s Hilo Idol, the search for the next Big Island icon kicks off again this month with auditions for Kona Icon 2024. Do you have the singing chops to take it all the way to the finale in April at MyBar Kona? Here’s your chance to find out.

Audition windows for the Big Island’s ultimate singing competition are from midnight through 11:59 p.m. on the following dates: Window 1 from Feb. 6-19 (to perform in Round 1 on Feb. 27), Window 2 from Feb. 20-26 (to perform in Round 2 on March 5), Window 3 from Feb. 27-March 4 (to perform in Round 3 on March 12), Window 4 from March 5-11 (to perform in Round 4 on March 19), Window 5 from March 12-18 (to perform in Round 5 on March 26) and Window 6 from March 19-25 (to perform in Round 6 on April 2).

Contestants must be 21 or older, a resident of the Big Island and not currently signed to any recording contract or management company. To audition, Icon hopefuls create a reel on Instagram, no more than 4 minutes long, and then tag @IconHawaii with #KonaIcon2024.

You can sing acapella, with an instrument or use a YouTube karaoke track as the background. Be sure your reel’s audio is clear and pick a song that showcases your style, personality and vocal talent. Remember, this is an audition!

All entries from each “window” will be judged and the top 10 will be informed by direct message as to whether they move on to the actual competition night, coupled with further directions, suggestions and instructions. Those who do not make it through one week are welcome to re-audition each week.

Follow @IconHawaii and feel free to direct message if you have any questions.

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